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Australia prolongs visa to Hong Kong citizens and cancels extradition treaty

Prime Minister Scott Morrison declared that the national security law is ‘a fundamental change of circumstances’ for the future of Hong Kong.

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Australia conceded a five-year extension of visa holders and suspended an extradition treaty with Hong Kong. China defined it as a “gross interference” and threatened retaliation.

Australia about to offer visa extensions and cancel extradition treaty with Hong Kong

Scott Morrison, PM of Australia declared that government would permit to some visa holders to extend the stay in the country. Also, at the end of this period, they could ask for residency. Then PM would also suspended its extradition treaty because national security law “constitutes a fundamental change of circumstances”. Temporary visa holders in Australia, eligible for the special arrangements are almost 10,000. Further 2,500 outside Australia and 1,250 applications on hand.

The Chinese embassy in Canberra replied to the actions: “China strongly deplores and opposes the groundless accusations and measures announced. The Australian side has been clanking that they oppose ‘foreign interference’. However they have blatantly interfered in China’s internal affairs by making irresponsible remarks on Hong Kong related issues. Its hypocrisy and double standard is exposed in full”. The embassy concluded asking Australia: “to immediately stop meddling in Hong Kong affairs and China’s internal affairs under any pretext or in any way, otherwise it will lead to nothing but lifting a rock only to hit its own feet.”

Contrasts about Hong Kong case

The tensions between Australia and China are escalating. Morrison declared that would “adjust the policy settings“. He added: “If you’re a temporary graduate or skilled visa holder, your visa will be extended to provide an additional five years from today. In addition to the time you’ve already been in Australia, with a pathway to permanent residency at the end of that period. And we will also provide a five-year visa with a pathway to permanent residency for future Hong Kong applicants for temporary skilled visas, subject to meeting an updated skills list and appropriate labour marking testing”. Winston Peters, Foreign affairs minister, claimed the national security law “fundamentally changed the environment for international engagement.”

The government warned also citizens about travels to China and Hong Kong. Australians can face “increased risk of detention on vaguely defined national security grounds”. The Prime Minister followed the path of Boris Johnson, offering help to Hongkongers. N°10 promised nearly 3 million residents of the former British colony, the possibility to establish in the UK. In the same way, China deplored UK actions, arguing that they had no right to grant residency. In Hong Kong, protesters are planning a parliament-in-exile to defend democracy from the attacks of the mainland China.

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